Ag News

Soil health is a vital component to sustainable farming. Indiana farmer Mike Shuter has been no-till farming for nearly 30 years. He says cover crops play a significant role in maintaining soil health on his farm.  “We’re trying to keep something green and growing on the field all year round,” he says.  “It helps build nutrients for the organisms that are in the soil and in turn those organisms will help the crop whether it is corn or soybeans.” Shuter tells Brownfield in addition to increased yields, they’ve seen several other benefits to planting cover crops.  “We’ve increased water infiltration...
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Crop prices are at the lowest levels they’ve been in recent years.  That, combined with expectations that interest rates are expected to increase in the coming years leads Purdue University ag economist Michael Langemeir to believe the decade-long increase in farmland values may soon be over. However, Langemeier, associate director of the Center for Commercial Agriculture says any decline should be slight and spread over more than one year.  Over each of the next three years – he says land values are looking at a 5 to 10 percent correction. But Langemeier says farmers shouldn’t be too worried.  He calls...
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For pork producers that weren’t hit with the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus, 2014 has been one of the most profitable years on record.  But what about farms that were hit with PEDv? Paragon Economics president Steve Meyer says, “Even those that have been hit with PEDv – the corn cost are going to go down that next year producers are still going to make a lot of money.  This is going to be the best two year period we’ve ever had.  I don’t think there is any question about that.” So how long with pork producers see this kind of...
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Cooperative Network recognized four individuals with the Cooperative Builder Award at the organization’s annual meeting in La Crosse this week. Pete Giacomini of Cooperative Resources International; Bill Berg, president and CEO of Dairyland Power Cooperative, Jim Hager, general manager of Harmony Country Cooperative and Kim Sponem of Summit Credit Union were recognized for their long service to their respective cooperatives. Cooperative Network president Bill Oemichen said: They set new records in how young they were when they took the helm at their cooperatives, and also for longevity in their positions. All have demonstrated passionate commitment to building their communities...
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Ag News - Rural Issues

Following the release of USDA Quarterly Hogs and Pigs Report on Friday, September 26th, the National Pork Board hosted a tele-conference for the ag media featuring three ag economists and their reactions to the report. The panel included Dr. Ron Plain, Professor of Agricultural Economics, University of Missouri; Daniel Bluntzer, Director of...Read the full story... »     
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Iowa farmland values fell about three-and-a-half percent over the past six months and are down nearly nine percent in the past year. That’s according to the latest survey of land values conducted by the Iowa Chapter of Realtors Land Institute.  The group’s chairman, Kyle Hansen with Hertz Farm Management, says the drop is not surprising given...Read the full story... »     
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Iowa Farm Bureau president Craig Hill is encouraging farmers to submit comments on the EPA’s “Waters of the U.S.” rule. Hill says the EPA’s new interpretation of the Clean Water Act would give the federal government jurisdiction over essentially all farmland in the state of Iowa. AUDIO: Craig Hill (5:47 MP3) Link to Iowa Farm...Read the full story... »     
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At the Iowa Pork Congress on Wednesday, attendees received an update on the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDv). One of the presenters was Dr. Rodney “Butch” Baker with the Iowa State University Veterinary Diagnostic Lab.   In this interview with Brownfield, Dr. Baker says there are signs that the spread of virus may be slowing down....Read the full story... »     
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